3rd Annual Boone Docs Film Festival
Saturday, February 24, 2024, from 2-5 p.m. (Doors open at 1:30 p.m.)
Appalachian Theatre of the High Country (559 West King Street, Boone, NC 28607)
General Admission: $12. Reserve tickets here.
BOONE, N.C. — The 2024 Boone Docs Film Fest will be held on Saturday, February 24, 2024, from 2-5 p.m. at the Appalachian Theatre of the High Country at 559 West King Street in Boone. Tickets cost $12 and are available for purchase here. The event is open to the public. For a disability accommodation, visit odr.appstate.edu.
This year's festival will screen 10 juried documentary shorts reflecting on and celebrating life in the Appalachian region. The screenings are arranged in two blocks and will include a Q&A with the filmmakers. In addition, “Jury’s Choice,” “Best Student Film” and “Audience Choice” award winners will be announced.
Boone Docs Film Festival, a celebration of Appalachia, is a collaboration between the Appalachian Theatre and the following Appalachian State University faculty members:
Dr. Davison stated, “This is our third year of the Boone Docs Film Festival and we are excited to see the festival grow each year in terms of the size of the audience and the quality of films. The festival provides a great winter entertainment outlet to learn about the myriad of stories from the Appalachian region.”
Subjects of the documentary shorts selected for the festival are wide ranging and include: goat farming, sports, nature, hand crafted goods, music, scientific research, immigration, grief and the legacy of Kituwah, a Cherokee mound in western North Carolina.
“Briscoe: Man of Science and Substance” – directed by Emma Dacol. This is the story of African American scientist, Dr. Madison Spencer Briscoe. Born in 1904, less than 50 years after the abolition of slavery, Dr. Briscoe overcame great adversity to make important contributions to the fields of parasitology and entomology and advance the sciences at Storer College, one of West Virginia’s first colleges for African Americans.
“Cottonwood Handmade” – directed by Jenna Michalski. Cole Avery found his love of leather-making by accident. Soon enough, he became obsessed with the process. Cottonwood Handmade ties back to his family roots and grandfather's cattle farm in Covington, Georgia. He centers his work around handmade, quality materials built to last. All of his products are cut, hammered, and stitched with his two bare hands and they can be found at the local farmers’ market and online.
“Everybody Loves Maako” – directed by Yndiana Montes Fogelquist. A short documentary about a classical violinist from Tokyo, Japan, who earns her master’s degree in Appalachian Studies at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. In the process, she learns to be an Old Time music fiddler, mostly while she is secluded in her Boone cottage during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Finding Home” – directed by Sidney Beeman. Finding Home follows the journey of a young Burmese immigrant, Cing Khek, and her family as they search for opportunities to build a new and better life in the conservative stronghold of West Virginia. The film depicts the ethnic diversity of the Appalachian region, the economic forces causing people to migrate to this area, and the choices individuals make to stay within the region. At its core, the film empowers a diverse cast of Appalachian citizens to reclaim their own narrative in a region that is often dominated by stereotypes.
“Football Town” – directed by Sammy Osmond. Tensions come to a head in a rapidly-growing college town when the school’s football team pulls off the latest in a string of miraculous upsets and ESPN comes calling.
“Heritage Homestead Farm” – directed by Samuel Byrd. A short documentary film about a goat dairy in Jefferson NC. Through an Interview with Carol Coulter, we learn more about her and her husband’s business and why supporting local producers matters.
“In the Rearview” – directed by Meagan Massa. As two siblings - the filmmaker and her brother - look back on a road trip with their father 20 years ago, they discover their memories have faded, but the feelings they share remain the same.
“Lady D” – directed by Ethan Payne. Lady D, aka "West Virginia's First Lady of Soul" takes us on a journey through history. Along the way, she ruminates on being the only black female blues singer in West Virginia.
“Mothertown” – directed by Anthony Sneed. The site of the original settlement of the Cherokee, the Kituwah mound, was thought lost for centuries. In her moving retelling of the efforts to reclaim the tribe’s land, former Chief Joyce Dugan and fellow tribe members foreground the spiritual, emotional, and social impact of Kituwah’s legacy. This is the story of how the Cherokee finally took their “land back.”
“Was That Boulder Always There” – directed by Nancy Kanga & Josh Kun. Six pairs of Alabamians sit in the forest for an hour. They’re just supposed to talk. About what? Anything. Birds screech. Vines slowly strangle whatever trees they can get their tendrils on. Insects have constant sex. Or at least want it. In a place so alive, sometimes the thing to do is let yourself be quiet.
“These documentaries showcase the beauty, resilience, and diversity found in Appalachia,” said Ward. “We also are very fortunate to be able to screen these thoughtful documentaries in the historic Appalachian Theatre.”
The 2024 Boone Docs Film Fest is presented with support from AppDocs, the Center for Appalachian Studies, the Department of Communication, the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies, High Country Humanities, the Office of Sustainability, and the University Forum Lecture Series. For festival details, visit apptheatre.org/events-and-tickets/2024-boone-docs.
AppDocs supports documentary work grounded in collaborative local and global partnerships that use photography, film/video, audio, and narrative writing to capture and convey memory, life, research, theory, and culture. AppDocs emphasizes stories from the Appalachian region. Learn more at https://doc.appstate.edu.
About the Center for Appalachian Studies
The Center for Appalachian Studies promotes public programs, community collaboration, civic engagement and scholarship on the Appalachian region. The center is committed to building healthy communities and deepening knowledge of Appalachia’s past, present and future through community-based research and engagement. Learn more at https://appcenter.appstate.edu.
About the Department of Communication
One of seven departments housed in the College of Fine and Applied Arts, the Department of Communication at Appalachian State University focuses on preparing students to succeed in the varied fields within the communication industry. The department offers five majors – advertising, communication studies, electronic media/broadcasting, journalism and public relations – and a minor in communication studies. Graduates work in a wide range of positions in media, corporate, agency, government and nonprofit organizations. Learn more at https://communication.appstate.edu.
About the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies
The Department of Interdisciplinary Studies offers graduate and undergraduate degrees in four program areas: Appalachian studies; gender, women’s and sexuality studies; global studies; and interdisciplinary studies. The department is also home to Watauga Residential College, an interdisciplinary, alternative general education program. The department promotes creative and imaginative engagement through a cross-disciplinary investigation of complex systems and problems. Learn more at https://interdisciplinary.appstate.edu.
About High Country Humanities
High Country Humanities at Appalachian State University aims to foster a greater understanding and appreciation of the humanities across the High Country region of North Carolina. The program supports faculty in their scholarly activities, promotes their collaborations with community partners and organizes events that help their expertise reach the wider public. High Country Humanities is an initiative of App State’s College of Arts and Sciences, with support from the Division of Academic Affairs. Learn more at https://hchumanities.appstate.edu.
About Sustainability at Appalachian
Appalachian State University’s leadership in sustainability is known nationally. The university’s holistic, three-branched approach considers sustainability economically, environmentally and equitably in relationship to the planet’s co-inhabitants. The university is an active steward of the state’s interconnected financial, cultural and natural resources and challenges students and others think critically and creatively about sustainability and what it means from the smallest individual action to the most broad-based applications. The university offers both undergraduate and graduate academic degree programs that focus on sustainability. In addition, 100 percent of Appalachian’s academic departments offer at least one sustainability course or course that includes sustainability, and all students graduate from programs that have adopted at least one sustainability learning outcome. Learn more at https://appstate.edu/sustainability.
About the University Forum Lecture Series
The University Forum Lecture Series brings nationally prominent speakers to campus. Their views enliven campus dialogue on a variety of issues. Past speakers have included activist Gloria Steinem, conservationist Terry Tempest Williams, presidential historian Harold Holzer, CNN correspondent Peter Bergen and award-winning science journalist Carl Zimmer. Learn more at https://universityforum.appstate.edu.
Written by Dr. Beth Davison
Edited by Lauren Gibbs
February 12, 2024